Bull Mountain from Clear Creek July 2014

Bull Mountain from Clear Creek July 2014

Page Type Page Type: Trip Report
Location Lat/Lon: 41.91136°N / 113.36597°W
Date Date Climbed/Hiked: Jul 11, 2014
Activities Activities: Hiking
Seasons Season: Summer

Bull Mountain from Clear Creek July 2014

One of your goals, Bull Lake Cirque.  Just to clarify, if you look further South from the Delta/Marsh, there is an actual clear-water Spring that is Bull Lake.  The water so clear in-fact, you can see the chasm from which the water "springs".

Bull Lake Cirque
Bull Lake/Spring from Cirque above.


Before departing, checked RADAR.  No echoes North of Great Salt Lake at all.  Blue skies most of the way there.  But go figure, as soon as Sawtooths came into view, single-cell Towering-Cumulus directly above Bull Mountain =/ Still mostly white though, so decided to give it a go.   

From Ogden, it was just over two hours.  Initially thought I was making good time because new posted speed-limit on the Edges of Utah (I-15/I-84/80 mph)!  So then, yes, take the Second Exit in Snowville to get to SR30 continuing straight to SR 42 (both paved/65 mph) for short way into Idaho.  Turn Left/West onto Strevell Road (dirt/35 mph).  Then, Left/South to Clear Creek Road (dirt/25 mph) returning back down into Utah.  You'll only have to drive dirt for about 10 miles.  Turn hairpin Left into Clear Creek Campground past First Vault until you see Trailhead or wide end-of-road camp-site near Second Vault.  In July 2014, original road to Round-a-bout Trailhead had been bull-dozed with berms every 5 yards.

Clear Creek Campground
View directly above Clear Creek Campground.

Clear Creek Campground Granite
Granite formations above Clear Creek Campground.


Hike to Box Elder County Highpoint is just over 4 miles one-way.  Start by walking past Second Vault along bermed road toward and past old round-a-bout.  

Clear Creek Trail
Dried-Grassy two-track starting out toward Bull Mountain.

Continue on dried-grassy two-track until it meets brown-dirt road at intersection with "BULL FLAT" Trail-sign.  Veer Left/South and follow dirt road for 1.3 miles when you'll encounter long creek-crossing. 

BULL FLAT Trail-sign.
BULL FLAT Trail-sign. Veer Left/South here.

Bull Mountain early trail.
Bull Mountain early trail.

Bull Mountain Trail Creek Views
Bull Mountain Trail creek views entire route.

Bull Mountain Trail Low
Bull Mountain Trail during first mile. You'll pass through/by several fence posts.

Faint trail to right of creek for shorter crossing across logs. Just after this creek, you'll see Trail-sign for "LAKE CREEK", turn Right/West and travel up steep hill. 


N41.93725° W113.32663°

Bull Mountain Long Creek-crossing
Bull Mountain Long-Creek crossing.

Bull Mountain Long-Creek bridge
Bull Mountain Long-Creek bridge. No need to get wet.

LAKE CREEK Trail-sign
LAKE CREEK Trail-sign. Turn Right/West then travel steep uphill.

After initial steep section is nice pleasant stroll through shaded pine forest.  For first half mile, that is. 

Bull Mountain Forest Trail
Bull Mountain Forest Trail through cool pines.

At 1.8 mile mark, you'll have to deal with massive-thick section of Class-3 dead-fall.  If you have determination and purpose you'll only need to climb/crawl/jump for 100 yards, then you'll be back in more open pine forest for another half-mile to main creek-crossing over to West-bank at 2.3 miles.


N41.92808° W113.34075°

Bull Mountain Trail Dead-fall
Bull Mountain Trail Dead-fall section. Only 100 yards of Class 3 Dead-fall. You can do it!

Bull Mountain Creek-crossing Stump
Stump marking Bull Mountain Creek-crossing to West-bank.

Bull Mountain Creek Crossing
Bull Mountain Creek Crossing 2.3 miles into hike. Again, no need to get wet with log bridge.


Once across onto West Bank, you'll have half-mile of easy enough to follow faint trail that cuts into very steep 60º hillside.  So, take deliberate steps, else you could roll down long ways.

Bull Mountain Stream West Bank
Bull Mountain Stream along West Bank picturesque.

Bull Mountain Trail West Bank
Bull Mountain Trail. Once on West Bank there is easy enough to follow faint trail from mile 2.3 to mile 2.8.

Bull Mountain Trail West Bank Rocks
Bull Mountain. Again trail on West Bank is initially easy enough to follow, sometimes marked by medium sized Rocks.


At 2.8 mile mark, I completely lost trail in forest amongst heavy brush and piles of deadfall.  Not seeing easy way through within forest, opted to angle high/right for more open meadow area.  But even meadow consisted of thick waist-high brush, sage, and tall sharp grass. At least had better visibility out there.  Again, if you're determined, bush-whacking only lasts for half-mile and Bull Lake Cirque appears in front of you providing more motivation.  Highly recommend leg-gaiters or long pants for this section.


N41.92157° W113.34850°

Bull Mountain High Meadow
Bull Mountain High Meadow view North into Idaho and Clear Creek Road.

Bull Mountain Trail High Meadow
Bull Mountain bushwhacking through High Meadow.

Bull Mountain Trail First Glimpse of Cirque
Bull Mountain First Glimpse of Cirque

Bull Mountain Trail Approaching Cirque
Bull Mountain approaching Cirque


After reading trip reports, had envisioned having to scale couloir. But as I entered Bull Lake Cirque area, spied green hillside to right.  No scrambling required!
At 3.4 mile mark, is bottom of easy RAMP up right side of Bull Lake Cirque.  The bushes and grass on RAMP are tamer ankle height and travel much much faster.
RAMP ends after 200 yards at White Slat Marker. Then you have option to fork right and take safer route through stand of trees or stay left and travel along rocky edge of Cirque. 
I chose the Cirque route.  After working so hard to get to this point, wanted to enjoy view down into Bull Lake Cirque and live on the edge.  Just be sure-footed.


N41.91859° W113.35572°


N41.91867° W113.35748°

Bull Mountain Ramp Bottom
Bull Mountain RAMP Bottom. Looking back toward high meadow you had to bushwhack through.

Bull Mountain RAMP
Bull Mountain RAMP

Bull Mountain Trail Delta Marsh
Bull Mountain Delta Marsh as depicted on TOPO.

Bull Mountain Trail Cirque Edge
Bull Lake Cirque Edge

Bull Lake Cirque
Bull Lake Cirque

Bull Lake Cirque View North
Bull Lake Cirque View North

Bull Lake Cirque View West
Bull Lake Cirque View West

Bull Lake Cirque Fence-line
Bull Lake Cirque Fence-line ends well before edge so no exposure. Note: You don't have to hike all the way to this fence before making bee-line to Highpoint. I just wanted to crest the Cirque.

Bull Lake Cirque High Edge
Bull Lake Cirque High Edge. Still snow in the chutes. I love snow!

Once on plateau you can see across broad meadow to cairn marking Highpoint. You also spy three-track leading most the way toward your goal. 
Yes, apparently you can drive all the way up here. But, didn't want to deal with reported rocky, rutted sections of the steeps to get to the plateau. Besides, where's the fun in that?
Highpoint Cairn has long branch in center and red-painted coffee-can housing mayo-bottle for Register.
The 360º views were cool, except for the two Thunder cells toward the South and West fixin' to come together with me in between. 
So, didn't stay as long as I wanted and made my way directly back to the Cirque through the Cattle-grate further down the fence-line.
Except for the 100 yard stretch of thick deadfall and half-mile of waist-high bushwhacking, this was an incredibly beautiful hike.  Thanks for viewing. 


N41.91136° W113.36597°

Bull Mountain Trail Plateau Three-track
Bull Mountain Trail Plateau Three-track toward Highpoint.

Bull Mountain Highpoint South
Bull Mountain Highpoint South

Bull Mountain Highpoint West
Bull Mountain Highpoint West with red-can Register at base of cairn.

Panoramic video from Bull Mountain Highpoint:


Bull Mountain Highpoint North
Me on Bull Mountain Highpoint North View.

Bull Mountain Highpoint East
Bull Mountain Highpoint East

Bull Mountain Cattle-grate
Bull Mountain Cattle-grate on way down.

Bull Lake Cirque Chute
Bull Lake Cirque Chute with Delta/Marsh below. Chute looks do-able. And, thought about jumping in for short-cut to beat Thunderstorms down mountain. But thought RAMP would be just as fast/faster. Timpanis boomed in distance entire way down but, didn't rain 'til I got in truck. Thanks be. And, Thanks for viewing.


Post a Comment
Viewing: 1-1 of 1

Dean - Jul 20, 2014 10:57 pm - Voted 10/10

Great addition

Thanks so much for taking the time to put your trip report together. The pics and commentary are good stuff.

Viewing: 1-1 of 1



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